Gianfranco Zola insists Herita Ilunga is committed to West Ham United despite the on-loan defender making claims to the contrary.
The 26-year-old has made 12 appearances for the Hammers so far this term following his season-long loan switch from Toulouse, but described the club as a 'second-rate' in an explosive interview.
He added: "Once I've proved myself in a team such this, I can hope to make the step up to another club."
However, Zola insists Ilunga is happy at Upton Park and has revealed he will attempt to sign the left-back on a permanent basis.
"I know Ilunga very well," said Zola. "He is totally committed to what he is doing here and his answers were taken in the wrong way.
"He is happy to be here and is looking to sign a contract with the club. As far as I'm concerned he is a player I will try to sign."
Meanwhile, Zola has denied media reports that he may be forced to sell key players like Dean Ashton and Matthew Upson in the transfer window.
He added: "We will consider selling some of them but we are not going to sell the best players.
"This club wants to progress so we are not going to sell our best players. This is what I am told by the club and I trust the club 100 per cent."